To be released Tuesday, April 28

WASHINGTON, D.C., – On Tuesday, April 28 the Niskanen Center will release senior fellow and election forecaster Rachel Bitecofer’s long-awaited race ratings for the 2020 House and Senate elections. Bitecofer’s “negative partisanship” prediction model holds that polarization is profoundly impacting American elections, heightening the importance of voter turnout. 

This theory was the basis of Bitecofer’s widely-cited 2018 Midterm model, which accurately predicted the large Democratic wave that cycle, months before Election Day. Her innovative model distinguished itself both in terms of lead time–four months–and in identifying specific districts that Democrats would ultimately flip as likely Democratic pick-ups (despite their long record of being held by the GOP).

“Like in 2018, Democrats will have a competitive advantage over Republicans due to negative partisanship and a strong referendum effect. That was true before the COVID-19 pandemic arrived to strip the party of its best line of defense (Democrats are coming to take away your private health insurance) and shine an even brighter light on its core weakness: unpopular incumbent Republican President Donald Trump.” 

The predictions that Niskanen will publish tomorrow come at a critical time in our country’s history, as already heightened levels of partisanship are particularly inflamed, in the wake of the COVID-19 epidemic. 

Bitecofer’s electoral analysis has been featured in a wide range of prominent outlets and news programs, including: The Washington Post, The New York Times, MSNBC, Real Time with Bill Maher, and The New Republic

The Niskanen Center is a 501(c)(3) advocacy organization established in 2014 that works to change public policy through direct engagement in the policymaking process.